Every narrative is worthwhile. Extraordinary ones need to be known.

Our passion is to discover new talent in screenwriting and to open exciting
international opportunities for them. We take a critical and genuine approach to script critique based on a blend of artistic merit and entertainment value.

About

The Australian International Screenwriting Awards (AISA) is a screenwriting competition committed to the discerning selection, recognition, and professional growth of emerging screenwriters from all over the world.

Australia, our home base, is a perfect merging of great cities and abundant nature. From big waves and rainforests to mountains and the massive outback. You can be diving the Great Barrier Reef one moment and checking out a contemporary art exhibit the next.

In this huge country that also happens to be the world’s smallest continent, you think you know what to expect but adventure and diversity lie around every sun-drenched corner. Each city is distinctly stimulating, ideal for a people so vigorously experimental, readily immersing themselves into the arts, the ocean, a sensory overload of biodiversity, a thriving cafe culture, or an intriguing cinematic history.

The Australian film industry began in the early 1900s and since then has produced internationally recognized filmmakers and actors who have made names for themselves locally as well as in Hollywood. Our country is perhaps the only one that can boast of numerous filmmakers who made it here first before venturing to the United States, Hong Kong, or Europe to further their craft and their international careers.

Our vision is to discover new talent in screenwriting, and we are passionate about opening exciting opportunities for them internationally.

We at AISA want to provide a platform of opportunities for top screenwriters. As such, our artistic director has created a robust and passionate panel of readers and judges to select our winners. With great discernment, we take a critical and unique approach to script critique, with decision-making based on a blend of artistic merit and entertainment value. Scripts are deliberated on fairly and substantially, with writers’ information kept confidential to ensure that writing is based solely on its quality and potential.

The top 10 winners are selected, and from this roster we award a first, second, and third prize winner and seven semifinalists.

The first prize winner will be awarded:

  • A one-hour phone call with a top film development executive
  • Two 15-minute consultations with film executives
  • Our official laurels
  • An InkTip introductory membership that includes access to hundreds of production companies
  • Script coverage from our pool of professional screenwriters

The second prize winner will receive two 15-minute consultations with film executives, our official laurels, and script coverage from our pool of professional screenwriters.

The third prize winner will receive a 15-minute consultation with a film executive, our official laurels, and script coverage from our pool of professional screenwriters.

Semifinalists will receive our official laurels as well as script coverage from our pool of professional screenwriters.

We welcome stories of all genres and themes from everyone. Every narrative is worthwhile. Extraordinary ones need to be known.

May the best story win,
The AISA Team

Submissions

  • Entrants must be eighteen (18) years of age or older.
  • Submissions must be written in English.
  • Submissions must be in PDF format.
  • Submissions must be the original work of the writer(s), and all rights must be wholly owned by the writer(s).
  • Submissions under a pen name will be immediately disqualified.
  • Submissions are only accepted electronically through our website or partner websites. We do not accept hardcopy submissions by mail.
  • The script cover page should include title, name, email, and phone number.
  • Submissions can be in any film or television genre.
  • There is no limit to the number of projects you may submit.
  • Submissions must be no longer than 150 pages in length. No exceptions.
  • Submissions must be received on or before the deadline(s) of 5:59 pm Australian Eastern Daylight Time (11:59 pm Pacific Daylight Time previous day) and payment must be made in full at the time of submission.
  • Once a script has been submitted, we will not accept substitutions or revised drafts. If you wish to submit a revised draft, you must enter it as a new submission.
  • Submissions will not be returned, so please ensure that you retain a copy.
  • Entrants retain all rights to their work.
  • Scripts submitted to other competitions or contests are eligible.
  • Professional writers and previous contest winners are eligible.
  • Judges, employees, and/or family members of AISA and/or its affiliates are not eligible.
  • Submissions that have been previously optioned, purchased, or produced are not eligible. If a submission becomes optioned, purchased, or goes into production between the time of submission and the end of the competition, the script will no longer be eligible.
  • Entrants are prohibited from contacting judges during the competition. All judging decisions are final.
  • Entry fees are non-refundable and void where prohibited by law.
  • The AISA, its judges, and/or its officers accept no liability whatsoever for any claims of damages, real or perceived, by any entrant as a result of their participation in the competition.
  • By entering the AISA, you hereby accept these rules.

Deadlines

SPRING 2020 SUBMISSIONS

Earlybird deadline
26 Mar 2020

April deadline
23 Apr 2020

May deadline
21 May 2020

June deadline
18 Jun 2020

July deadline
23 Jul 2020

August deadline
20 Aug 2020

Extended deadline
17 Sep 2020

SPRING 2020 SUBMISSIONS

Earlybird deadline

April deadline

May deadline

June deadline

July deadline

August deadline

Extended deadline

26 Mar 2020

23 Apr 2020

21 May 2020

18 Jun 2020

23 Jul 2020

20 Aug 2020

17 Sep 2020

Winners

FIRST PRIZE

My Daughter, Susannah
by Michelle Cutler

SECOND PRIZE

Undercurrent
by Martin Grigorov

THIRD PRIZE

Sacred Profanity
by Malcolm Wong

SEMIFINALISTS

Bully: The Incredibly True Story of Australia’s Most Dedicated War Nurse
by Joshua A. Cohen

A Tiger’s Tale
by John Culton

The Queen’s Mark
by John Culton

There’s Something about Finch
by T.R. Elger

Baby
by Katie Found

Little Things Mean a Lot
by Michael Monteith

The Thursday Whaler
by Damien A. Mulvany

FAQ

I don’t live in Australia. Can I still submit an entry?
Absolutely. Our judges love to read scripts of all genres no matter where you’re from. Just keep in mind that submissions must be written in English.

What are the requirements to enter?
Please see SUBMISSIONS for complete details.

Does my screenplay need to be formatted?
Yes. All submissions must be in PDF format, and should follow the standard industry format. Submissions can be features as well as shorts for film or television (drama or comedy). Handwritten entries will not be accepted.

What information should I have on my title page?
Your screenplay cover page should include title, name, email, and phone number. For privacy concerns, we ask that you do not include any of this information within the body of your screenplay. Having said that, we’re aware that some competitions ask that you remove your name and contact information from the cover page. No need to worry if you end up doing so as we’ll still accept your entry. We have your information via our submission partners. We just prefer to have it on the screenplay as well.

Can I submit more than one entry?
Yes. There is no limit to the number of projects you may submit.

Can I submit an entry on behalf of a friend?
No. The writer(s) and owner(s) of the copyright must personally submit an original work.

What qualifies as “an original work”?
All rights must be wholly owned by the writer(s). We cannot, and do not, accept adaptations of books, plays, or other source materials that were written by someone other than the writer(s). However, if you are the writer(s) of the original book, play, or short film then by all means feel free to submit.

What genres are accepted?
We welcome all film and television genres.

Will you claim any rights to my script or any percentage of future profits?
Absolutely not. You retain all rights to your screenplay at all times.

Do I need to register my screenplay to enter?
No. But you should always make it a priority to copyright your work. This can be accomplished, depending on your location, through the Australian Writers’ Guild (AWG), the Writers Guild of America (WGA), or the U.S. Library of Congress Copyright Office.

What is taken into consideration during judging?
The primary factor in our decision-making process is, is it a story well told? For us, this means a story that is uniquely engaging and brilliantly developed. It should be written and formatted properly for the screen. We also score submissions for characterization, dialogue, style, clarity, originality, and structure. The primary and overriding decision-making factor is whether or not the script is entertaining and something we would like to see brought to the screen.

I made a few changes to the screenplay I submitted. Can I go ahead and send along my revisions?
Please note that once a script has been submitted, we are unable to accept any revisions or corrected pages for that submission under any circumstances. We have a great team of readers who act swiftly on each and every submission, but not the resources to read and reread the same (or similar) material over and over again. If you wish to submit a revised draft, you must enter it as a new submission and pay the additional entry fee. Unless the rewrite has been fairly substantial, however, we do not suggest you doing this.

What will you do with my contact information?
Any information you provide will only be used to communicate with you about your submission and to send along any news or updates regarding the competition. For more information on this, please see our Privacy Policy.

Will you return my submission(s) to me after the competition?
No. Submissions will not be returned, so please ensure that you retain a copy. Furthermore, we do not store your material, so please be sure to back up all your creative work in a safe place.

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